Blog Pick of the Week: Ceasar's Palace and Supplier Searching
When we run an initiative, we invite suppliers that are well known in the industry as well as a few that we may have used in the past. But who are we missing out on? What golden nugget is being left out?
I found this article in the Wall Street Journal about Caesar's Palace using Ariba's Supplier Discovery tool to strengthen the supply base they use for bids. This increased the competition during the bids and is very efficient in the search process.
Every procurement organization has the situations where there are very few suppliers and it is difficult to get a true competitive situation in order to run the bids. Sometimes it has to be a direct negotiation or contract extension and you can't bring it to reverse auction or take it out for an official competitive bid.
If you have ever been to Las Vegas, it is huge, and large, and very flashy. There is a lot of procurement that goes on to run those hotels, restaurants and casinos. There is also a lot money exchanging hands. Suppliers would love to be part of all that.
There are other supplier search options out there of course. Thomas Net is one of those services. There are also services that are by a specific industry such as Target marketing specifically for the marketing industry.
What do you do to invite a broader range of suppliers? Do you award some business to them to test them out and make the marketplace more robust for the future? Share your thoughts by commenting below or tweeting @buyersmeetingpoint.
Supplier discovery is a really important piece in eSourcing. When you think about what would make an eSourcing tool incredibly useful to any organisation, even one with just a couple of employees, it would be the ability to search for suppliers on a highly accurate basis, for example, "Business card suppliers within 10 miles". There are not really any tools that can do this yet, and even the Ariba Discovery tool has a lot of junk categorisation. There is also a huge negative to charging suppliers to be on the network, as the buyers are already being charged to access it as well. One day, someone like Google or another will come along with a public database of suppliers, a bit like they are already doing with Google Places, and will turn this Discovery solution into a freebie. When they do, eSourcing can really fly.